Oakmont open for qualifying

Golf: Local club presents qualifying tournament for prestigious U.S. Open

locals Kanda, Amirkhizi take part.

June 04, 2011|By Charles Rich,

GLENDALE — Since it opened its doors in 1922, Oakmont Country Club has hosted its share of prestigious events.

The fabled club has been the site of professional and collegiate tournaments, in addition to co-hosting the state amateur championship before undergoing major renovations in 2009.

It will add another big event to its list Monday, as Oakmont is one of 11 sites in the nation and 13 internationally that will host a qualifier for the 111th rendition of the U.S. Open.


The U.S. Open, one of four majors and 13 championships conducted by the United States Golf Assn., will be held June 16-19 at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md. The international sectionals were held in May in Japan and England. The sites in the United States will be in Washington, Texas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio and Tennessee.

The field of 93 from the Oakmont event will feature 58 professionals and 35 amateurs. The top four finishers in the 36-hole sectional qualifier will advance to the U.S. Open.

The first round will begin at 6:50 a.m., with the second round slated to start at 12:15 p.m.

The field will have a pair of locals ties, as Brett Kanda and Brennan Amirkhizi will each look to qualify for the championship for the first time. Kanda, a La Crescenta resident and a former All-Area Boys' Golfer of the Year while at Flintridge Prep, and Amirkhizi, who recently led the Glendale Community College men's golf program to an appearance in the state playoffs, each moved into Monday's round after getting through their local qualifiers in May.

Kanda, a Flintridge Prep and UNLV graduate, turned pro last year and has been on the Canadian Tour since February. He's also a member at Oakmont, which hosted a local qualifier for the U.S. Open last year.

"I'm real excited about trying to qualify," said Kanda, who will begin play on the first hole at 8:29 a.m. "I had been struggling a bit going into the local qualifier, but I trusted my ability and have been working hard at it since.

"I've made some changes with my swing and things have started paying off. It's great for the club to host the sectional for the first time. I'm happy for them."

Amirkhizi, a sophomore at Glendale College, won his local qualifying round May 17 at Crystalaire Country Club in Llano. That came one day after the Vaqueros placed seventh in the state tournament in Hanford.

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